Gard Alert: Libya – port situation update

According to information received from Gard’s correspondent Gargoum Legal Marine, Libya’s working ports are considered safe for ships and crew and the situation as at 7 March 2017 is as follows:

  • Closed ports: Benghazi, Derna, Es Sider, Ras Lanuf
  • Working ports: Melittah, Zawia, Tripoli, Misurata, Marsa El Brega, Tobruk, Al Khoms, Marsa El Hariga. Farwah, Bouri, Zuetina, Sirte

According to the correspondent, all working ports are considered safe for ships and crew. However, the security situation in the area may change quickly and security advice to ships calling at ports in Libya can change from day to day. Members and clients are therefore advised to continue to exercise caution when entering Libyan ports and waters. It is particularly important to:

  • adhere to the international laws of trading, follow the official sea navigation routes to any of the working Libyan ports and avoid navigating in the coastal waters of the closed ports;
  • declare the intended voyage and type of cargo to be discharged/loaded to the local agent well in advance of arrival at any Libyan port to allow the agent sufficient time to notify the appropriate authorities; and
  • otherwise stay in close contact with local port authorities, vessel’s agent or Gard’s local correspondent to obtain the most up to date and reliable information available at any given time.

The above recommendations are in addition to the usual sanctions checks, given that a number of Libyan individuals and entities are subject to international sanctions. Please refer to the “Sanctions” section on Gard’s website for relevant information and advice.

US International Port Security Program (IPSP)

As Libya is still listed by the US Coast Guard (USCG) as a country with ports that do not maintain effective anti-terrorism measures, vessels trading on US ports must also comply with the specific conditions of entry under the US International Port Security Program (IPSP). On 1 April 2014 the USCG issued a Port Security Advisory, recommending that vessels calling at ports in Libya take enhanced security measures such as minimising ship-port interface activities, guarding ship access points, clarification of security responsibilities between vessel and port, etc. The complete list of ports considered to have ineffective anti-terrorism measures at any given time, along with the associated conditions of entry, is included in the policy notices available on and by following the menu path: Missions > Maritime Security > International Port Security Program (ISPS Code) > Port Security Advisory.
Source: Gard (